When I write a post, I feel like I’m writing to friends. I’ve been doing this for five years now and while things have changed and grown in ways I never could have imagined, it still feels small and personal and like we’re sitting across from each other sipping coffee. I hope you feel like that, too.
One thing I forget, though, is that many of you are new-ish here. I assume you know me and our family and what this blog is about when maybe you just got here after clicking on a photo on pinterest (welcome!). So I thought I’d take a few minutes on this first post of the new year to properly introduce myself to you. My life in bullet points, if you will.
* My name is Emily. Maiden name is Jones. Married name starts with an L (hence my out-of-control wall of L’s).
* I’m the middle of three girls. My sisters are the best. You would love them both.
* I was a ballerina all my childhood and secretly wish I could still dance. I don’t have the right feet for ballet, but my posture remains pretty good.
* I went to college at Azusa Pacific University (a christian college in southern California) where I met my future-husband, Ryan, also from the Seattle area who was looking for the sun for a few years. We moved back home after graduating and while there are many things about Seattle that we love, we look at each other every March and start searching for houses in sunny cities.
* My degree is in Child & Family psychology. I thought maybe I’d like to be a family therapist or an elementary school teacher. I do neither professionally, but find I still love talking deeply about marriage/family/relationships and being in my kids’ elementary school classrooms teaching art.
* My mom’s parents were part of the Seattle theater culture in the 50’s and 60’s. My grandfather was an actor, musician and set designer; my grandma was a dancer and actress and made pie crust perfectly. I’m pretty sure my artistic side came straight from them. I’m still working on the pie crust thing.
* When my friends started getting married and having babies, I designed their stationery which turned into a business: Jones Design Company. I made wedding invitations, baby announcements and one million Christmas cards for 10 years before ending this aspect of the company in 2012.
* I cried really hard when we found out our No.3 was another boy. I mean, that sounds terrible and I was so embarrassed that my reaction was tears, but it’s what happened. By No.4 I felt prepared to have four boys. It actually kinda made me excited. Then she was a girl. Of course I can’t imagine having any other combination of kids. I really love having three men and a little lady (remember that movie?! Classic).
* I started blogging right before Audrey was born because women do crazy things when they are super pregnant and caring for three boys under age 5 at home. I had no idea it would turn into a passion and community and full time business and I couldn’t be happier about all of it. I needed a creative outlet and our family needed extra income and so it was the perfect fit.
* Ryan doesn’t show up on the blog or instagram much, but he is as much a part of Jones Design Company as I am. He’s the tech guy and marketing strategist; I’m the creative and make things look pretty.
* I wear jeans pretty much every day. Just wanted you to know that.
* And I wear fake eyelashes (lash extensions, to be exact).
* One of my greatest joys is inspiring women to create. Whether through hosting a craft night or posting doable projects or sharing home decorating ideas or teaching creative classes, I just love being part of it. More of that to come …
So that’s me. Well, there’s more, of course, but that’s a pretty good summary. I’m so thankful for you and look forward to a year full of inspiration, honesty, friendship and encouragement.
I really enjoy your blog and hope that you keep writing. I look forward to all of your posts because although everything looks picture perfect you still seem like a down-to-earth good person/parent…Someone I would want to be friends with if you lived in my area. Keep posting please!!! I really loved the cheers diy….I need to try that soon!
Emily, I’ve been a reader since almost the beginning, I’m not sure how I found your blog but I’m glad I did! I feel like we would be great friends we have so much in common! I have 3 boys and a little girl as well my daughter just turned 5 on the 4th. For me it was when I found out that I was finally having a girl that I cried like a baby! It was a happy, happy day! :) and if they offered adult ballet classes around here I would be there in a heartbeat! You better believe that I put my little girl in ballet as soon as they would let me. :) anyway, just wanted you to know I am a huge fan of yours! I love your style in every way, from your personal style to your decorating style, keep it up and thanks for all you do! You are an inspiration.
Thanks Elise! Sounds like we have a ton in common. I wish I could find a good ballet class and I do love that my little darling is a ballerina :)
I am an APU grad also! I have a masters degree from their marriage and family therapy program as well. And I did become a MFT. Although I burned out on doing therapy pretty quickly and therefore I use my license doing some consulting. It was great to find that out about you!
I found your blog by my daughter who has enjoyed it a lot! I find it very interesting as well. Reading about you in bullet points was interesting because I too went to Azusa Pacific but it was “college” back then, met my husband there and have been married for 41 years plus I also have 4 children. Life goes by so quickly. You will be glad to have your ramblings written down as your children grow. A digital journal! I wonder if you went to school with my son or his wife, huh. Small world. Blessings.
I almost never post a comment on the blog, but I always read. I love this blog, and your style and creativity. And seriously, I think we should be friends. :)
Happy New Year!
I have 3 boys as well (and a fireman husband) and I will never forget when I found out from a psychic (one and only time) that she thought I was having a boy. I went home crying to my husband and he said to me “I hope my mom didn’t feel that way as I too am the third boy.” Stopped me dead in my tracks. We did go on to have a daughter so it all turned out well. Your family is darling and your talent is inspiring. Keep up the good work :)
Thank you for sharing so openly. It has been such a joy to read your blog and it amazes me how, even though I have never met you personally, I feel like we just click. I also have three boys and am currently pregnant with our fourth. And like you, I also cried when I had my third boy and was so utterly embarrassed that I did. I love this third little man so much and couldn’t imagine life with out him. As we wait to find out our fourth baby, I feel like God has given me a peace about this little one and that it is OK if we do have four little men in this house. Thank you for being willing to share about your feelings with your third little man because it is nice to know that I wasn’t the only mom out there that struggled. God knows what is perfect for our families!
Many Blessings for you and all your loved ones!
Thank you Emily for sharing, Happy New Year. You sense of style and simplicity is very catchy it inspired me to try ideas that are in my head. For instance, couple years ago I wanted to create a casablanca wall in my bedroom, but i did not want to use wall paper, conveniently you post a template of that exact design which i copy and courageously painted my dream wall. I share your your sense of style and love to repurpose stuffs, the challenge is I am not as creative at using my hand as most people. Through your site i get to create things that i find simple , like the accent wall and the chalkboard.
What the what?! I went to Azusa Pacific too!! I think you were there a few years after me though… I never knew that about you! I also started dating my husband there, but we knew each other in high school. Also moved back to the PNW and dream of moving to Pasadena some day ;) he he!
So many other similarities- I enjoyed reading this. Thank you!
Love your blog! I have been reading for over 3 years but didn’t know most of the bullet points you posted. Thank you! I feel like I know you now! You are super creative and I love that you share your faith and family so well…so uplifting! Keep it up and thank you for being so inspirational!
I subscribed to your email updates awhile back and am so glad I did. Love your posts, your style, and your candidness. Is that word? haha
Loved this idea so I copied you and gave you credit of course!
I don’t comment often but I check your blog every day. It’s actually the only one I check with my coffee in the morning ( so it is like I have coffee with you). And now that I’m on maternity leave it leaves me a moment of sanity with my first baby (please tell me it gets easier) :-) love love love your style. I consider myself so much like you but I venture into color a lot more. Funny, I’m always trying to go more neutral. But I really love that canvas you have by your stairs with the flowers in the vase. Can you tell me where you got it or where I might find something like it???
Thanks and keep inspiring! I love visiting you!
I love your blog! I am inspired by your simplicity and style. You are a real person – I so appreciate that. I really enjoyed your what I wear posts! Thank you for sharing your life with us!
Thanks Elizabeth! I always do my best to be honest about who I am and am glad it translates over the internet :)
P.S. i’ll post more what I wore stuff this year. I promise.
Yes, I’m new here. Thank you for taking some time to tell me more about you.
I’ve been reading your blog since last november and I’m in love with your house and work.
I’m brazilian and I love decor and diy, that’s how I came here. :)
Thank you for sharing so openly. I went searching for gift tags this Christmas and was connected with your blog. What a gift. I feel like I have just found something precious in the big heap of information that is out there. Excited to follow your blog as I am also a NW mom, an ex-ballet dancer, and studied Child Psych and Early Childhood Ed. I feel bonded instantly.
Love your necklace in this photo…Can you share where you got it?
Also LOVE your blog and most everything about you
My necklace was from a random shop in the mall last year. Not sure I could find a source :)
Love so much of what you do and have gained much inspiration from your site. Enjoyed a few items from your shop as well! Just wanted to wave a flag at the lash extensions and urge you to take a look at the warnings for these. My grandmother who was an uber-creative like yourself started losing her sight in major ways as she aged and it was definitely the hardest part of her getting older because with it she lost what she loved so much to do. Since we’re friends here, I just couldn’t not say anything. All the best to you and your family in 2015!
Thanks for the concern :)
Love, love, love your blog! I, too, have tried many, many crafts and projects over the years and need to “have something going” all the time. Creating is the spice of my life now that I have retired from teaching. Keep sending out your wonderful ideas. They are great!
Happy New Year, Emily. Let me just say that I am kinda obsessed with you. Everything you are, do, and say are such an inspiration and I appreciate you beyond words. I have your prints in my bedrooms, bathrooms and craft room! As a fellow mom of 4 ~ all girls (which seems quite normal as I am one of 4 girls!), lover of God, lover of crafts, lover of kids (I’m a former special education paraprofessional), I feel like a kindred spirit to you…..your generosity in sharing your talents and heartfelt stories are such a gift to all of us and I hope you feel the love and gratitude coming your way. I am soo hoping you are able to do a “handwriting” class as I am a real, honest to goodness stalker of your writing. I used to teach calligraphy, but your style is so incredibly creative and fun…..if you do the class, I’M IN! Thank you, Emily, so all you are and all you do. May you and yours be richly blessed (just as you bless us) in 2015!
I am a momma to one, a darling little boy, and we just found out we are expecting our second….another boy! I am embarrassed to say but I cried big, ugly tears when I found out. I just know I am a boy mom at heart but I pray God will someday give me a little girl!!!!
Oh Madeline, you are not alone :)
You did a fabulous job of profiling your life in bullet points! Honest to goodness, I know I couldn’t have been that complete and concise if I would have tried! I would say that after that, I probably know more about you than I I’ve known from reading your fabulous blog. I’m always impressed by your energy, creativity and motivation. Of course, with raising 4 children, is energy even an option? You go girl! I love a woman who admits to wearing jeans daily (you are real!) and a woman who admits that a third child of the same sex made her weep. (you are really real!) Thank you!
BTW…love that shirt, sweater, necklace and vest! I just know it looks great with jeans.
May you and your sweet family be blessed with God’s adbundance in 2015!
Thank you, Judy! You are so kind.
Love your blog and have been a faithful follower since we bought our house in 2011 and I was searching for inspiration in decor. You are so lovely and I look forward to your posts! I’ve since pared down the blogs I follow (not much time with a 13 month old that keeps me going all day!!) but so enjoy continuing to read your posts. Thanks for sharing all that you do!!
Love learning more about you. Also love that your husband is so involved with your blog/design company. Need to get my hubby on board!
sign me up for an actual coffee date please. its gonna work out one day!!
Yes! We must. I’ll meet you in kona :)
Well, I too have three boys and cried when I found out the third was another boy! I felt guilty but I guess it’s a thing ;). I wouldn’t change it though, they are all special. Pregnant with 4th right now and have no clue what were having ( will find out soon). I love your style and realness about parenting that you share! Also your free downloads ;)
Isn’t it the most terrible feeling to be crying over having a baby that’s perfectly wonderful but not what your heart was hoping for? I didn’t even know how much I was hoping for a girl until that moment when we found out he was a boy. I hated that I cried so hard (for 2 days!) but then got over it. Love that boy like crazy now :)
So nice to meet you! The introductory email was awesome! I just recently found your blog when pinterest directed me toward your printable gift tags. Your work is wonderful and I look forward to being a reader! (I used the gift tags for Christmas artwork – thank you so much!)
Welcome! So glad you used the gift tags and happy to have you here!
Loved learning more about you- thanks for sharing!
Thank you for sharing more of yourself with us! I love your blog.
I love your blog, I love your honesty and how you give back to your readers. I love that you are real and the projects you share are awesome and really fun to do. Thanks so much for the last five years. Thanks!
Thank you for the more thorough introduction. I’ve probably been following you for a year or so, but I still feel relatively “new” to your blog. :)
I must know your lipstick/gloss brand & color? Perfect!
Enjoy your blog & style so much
Lipstick is maybelline color sensational in truffle tease and gloss is philosophy raspberry sorbet. It’s my new combo and I like it!
I’m so glad I took a moment to read your email blast. I too have 3 little boys and about cried when I found out my third baby was a boy. For many reasons I thought I was having a girl but I am blessed and would not change a thing! Not sure I’ll be going for #4 though.Time will only tell. Thanks for sharing some personal info about yourself. I now SAH but have a degree and passion for graphic design. I too am finding various creative outlets so I can continue to thrive personally, share my creativity and make an income (hopefully).
Three boys is so great. Having a girl just completed things for us, but we would have been so happy with our three boys. Sounds like we have a lot in common!
I’m reading your blog this morning at APU!! I’m an alum and my daughter is now going here. I work here as well. They should bring you back to talk to students.
So fun! We love it there. And I’ll come back any time :)
I recently found your blog, so thank you so much for the bullet point post! I have 4 kids too, ages 8.5-1.5. I have a (new) writing blog and a (3 year old) food blog because I’m a gemini, but feel like I am really new to blogging since I am in between other writing projects and finally focusing on it. I figured out that being part of helping women create is my favorite thing about blogging too, so glad others feel the same. :)
I’m new here (hi!) & loved this intro post. Thank you for sharing more about yourself with us!
Welcome! Glad to have you. Cute blog name too :)
Happy New Year to you and your family of 6! I am new to your blog and love it every time you send one out! Good friends of mine already follow you and they told me about you so I am a late follower… and am thoroughly enjoying the variety of things you discuss and share with us.
Keep up the creative work, Emily!
Welcome Clare! I’m all over the place with what I post, but isn’t that how life is?! A little bit of everything makes for a full life :)
I look forward to your blog posts the most! Like you said I imagine us sitting across the table from each other enjoying a latte and just discussing things from crafts to our children etc. I have been following your blog almost as long as you have been writing it and I am never disappointed to read a post!
I hope you had a fantastic Christmas and wishing you all the blessings this 2015 can bring!!
Thank you Anita!
What a lovely little introduction! I myself am new to following your blog. i dont’t even remember how I happened upon it, but I loved the design so much and what you had to say, I figured I would subscribe and “join the conversation”. I too am a blogger/designer combo and look forward to reading more from you. 4 kids!? wowza you must be some sort of super woman to be able to juggle four kids and a blog/business. Best of luck to you and your family in the new year!
Welcome, Loretta! So glad to ‘meet’ you. Yes, four kids + a business is a lot, but we’ve found ways to make it work for us and I wouldn’t want it any other way.
I have read your blog for many years and like the previous women said, it is a definite treat and inspiration. Thank you for all you do. The Lord touches so many hearts through your kind, honest words and your creativity. Many of your art prints hang in my home (just yesterday a friend said “I love that chair print”) and I loved, loved, loved your Graphic Design class. I designed our Christmas card for the first time this year and it was SO fun! Thank you Emily. Love your blog.
Thank you for sharing – I have been reading your blog for nearly 5 years and taken your blog class (which is amazing). I wanted to join in and say thank you too. You have been a huge inspiration to me as a mama, a woman, a creative and now a humble blogger myself. You are an encouragement through your love for God and how you share your heart. When I started reading your blog is also when I began to remember and love to be creative again – in part because of Jones Design Company – so thank you Emily!
I have been a reader for over 3 years, and you are truly my favorite blogger. Your humility, love for your family, and love for God, show through in your post. I am not very creative, and you always inspire me to try things and step out of my comfort zone. Being a working mom of three boys, your blog is great “treat” to read and a source of encouragement and inspiration.
I also love the diversity of your post. It’s a great mix of your home, projects, faith, outfits, etc…
Keep up the great work!
Thank you! I stumbled across your site recently and appreciated this post. Your blog was very inspirational to me the other day when my life was feeling a little cluttered and crazy. I named my daughter Audrey too… love that name <3
Don’t forget you are also an amazing inspiration to all of us! Thank you for all the light you bring into the world:)) Ive been a reader for 4 years!
As an older lady, I must say that I find your blog timeless. You are inspiration to me as well as your younger readers. I married young, age 19, had 3 children at ages 28, 30, and 32. Now after almost 43 years of marriage, I find new ways to look at my home, children, and grandchildren. I appreciate your candor and thoroughly enjoy sharing in your life. Thanks for sharing!
I just love hearing about the women who read the blog. Thank you for taking the time to introduce yourself! I think our desire to create and be surrounded by beauty never ends and I’m glad I can be part of your inspiration as well!
Hi Emily…i don’t really remember how we first met…it was probably from pinterest initially before i got hooked on your blog…i LOVE your decorating style…you have inspired me on many occassions so thank you. i’m also probably a bit older than most ladies here…I have two daughters 32 & 29 and a son 23… I’m also a first time grandmama and am over the moon in love with my 15 month old grandson. I don’t ever want stop learning and creating and since I live in the South (Louisiana) my favorite thing is to decorate for all holidays since we don’t have four seasons- we’re lucky if we get two ;) Again thank you for sharing your style, talents and loves
Hello Emily!….wishes for a Happy, inspiring, creative and healthy New Year to you and your family! I’m new at your blog recently found it through Pinterest and I liked the simplicity of your designs and your thoughts on life. I really do enjoy your posts. I’m the middle of three girls myself. I live in Greece, I have a girl 9,5 and twins, boy and girl 7,5. I studied graphic design and love doing craft and cooking projects with my kids and my kids friends!
Lovely introduction by the way!
Keep up the optimistic, inspiring, creative work!